Regarding the current status of the Presidential race, I have no words (although the phrase “train wreck” comes to mind).
If you were unclear as to the relative moral standing of the two candidates, the tape released last week should have put it to rest. (To say nothing of Trump’s response.)
And if you had already decided for whom you were voting, then you’re either in (near) complete agreement with me, or you’re probably not reading this.
All that being said, let’s talk about something more uplifting…
My wife was browsing the local book wholesaler, and found a great deal on something she thought I’d like: The Mini Farming Guide to Fermenting, by Brett Markham. As it turns out, she was right. Its subtitle indicates that the book’s goal is to teach “Self-Sufficiency from Beer and Cheese to Wine and Vinegar”, with bread thrown in for fun.
Being an avid beer brewer and wine-maker, to say nothing of bread and vinegar, and having dabbled just the tiniest bit in cheese (soft cheeses only, so far), I was afraid that it would be either hopelessly technical, or ridiculously over-simplified. But, after reading through, I was pleasantly surprised. The author has an engineering background, and applies that scientific accuracy to the projects, but is able to simplify things really rather well for the layman. It’s not too “in-the-weeds,” and he goes into sufficient depth where necessary. I could only really ask for a few more recipes in each of the chapters–but even there, once you’ve got your feet wet and have half an idea what you’re doing, you can find dozens, if not hundreds, of recipes on the internet.
I do have to quibble a little bit with the claim for “self-sufficiency.” Sure, he’ll teach you how to make the yummy foodstuffs in your own home. But he doesn’t really go into “full” self-sufficiency: the growing of barley, hops, wheat, etc. Or any significant discussion of raising your own dairy animals. But even there, I’m not horribly disappointed; again, there are plenty of other sources out there (although there are few enough on grain growing) to cover those aspects. This book is intended to show you what to do with the raw materials, once you’ve got them.
The author has three other “Mini Farm” books. They look interesting, and I’ll likely pick them up as time rolls on; as yet, though, I haven’t read them, so can’t speak directly to their usefulness. But if they’re of the same quality as the Guide to Fermenting, they’re more than likely worth looking for.
What have you been reading, folks? Anything interesting? How are your Fall/Winter preps going?